Estimating Hiking Times

We were standing just off the parking lot, looking across the lake where we could see our destination. “It should only take about three hours,” my hiking partner announced. It ended up taking closer to five. Why? The rule of thumb (aka Naismith’s Rule) for coming up with approximate hiking times is 1 hour for […]

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Social Media Another SAR Tool

“We need your help with RT. Please see our Facebook page for important information (dr)” – tweeted by Glacier National Park (@glaciernps) this a.m. The message: an overdue staff member. The Facebook entry goes on to say: “We need your help. Glacier National Park seasonal employee Jacob “Jake” Rigby is overdue from a hike he began […]

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Gear Quality

My daughter bought a brand-new bear spray holster for her dad after the last can slipped out of a neoprene sheath, hit a rock, punctured, and covered him in a miserable, pepper-laden mist while stuck on a rock face on a short scramble. Strike one for the neoprene sheath not doing its job. Strike two […]

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Mountaineering

Six of us wanted to hike alpine; six wanted to summit mountains. Essentially that was the difference between the mountaineers and the alpine ramblers in our group of 12 last week. That – and the amount of gear each had to carry! While my hiking partners and I quickly set a route up to a […]

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Bear Hangs and Canisters

Established backcountry campsites usually have bear poles or lockers. Steel cables with clips make it simple to hang food; as does stuffing your tucker into an animal-proof metal box. But what do you do when you are traveling off the beaten track? Bear Hangs It used to be considered enough to throw a rope over […]

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More Bear Basics

 A grizzly sow and three cubs – it was our lucky day! Of course the fact that we were in the car at the end of the day, instead of on the trail, made the whole experience slightly more enjoyable. Outdoor adventures in the summer increase chances of wildlife sightings. One of the best ways […]

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Bear Basics

High up on a steep alpine slope we saw them. Bear… diggings. Yup, nature’s rototiller was hard at work tearing up the alpine in search of a tasty morsel. You don’t have to see a bruin to know they’re around. As we head off down the path of summer, chances of coming across sign of […]

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